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Contract Lawyer Indicted for Child Porn on Firm's Computer

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By Jonathan R. Tung, Esq. on November 11, 2015 4:39 PM

The life of a 65 year old attorney is about to change profoundly: he has been charged with using his Philadelphia law firm's computer to access and view child pornography.

According to an affidavit, Lawyer Goerge Bock Ditter told investigators that it all began when he came across child pornography while researching material for his book. In his own chilling words, "this is where I would say I fell off the cliff ... I discovered an unknown interest in these images ..."

Tech Firm Investigation

It all began when Ditter, a contracted lawyer, printed a sexually explicit image using the company's copier which was later discovered by one of the firm's partners. Later, an investigation began when the law firm called in a tech consulting company to deal with a computer virus that had infected the firm's network.

When images of child pornography were found, a partner contacted the local police and passed on his belief that Ditter had used a law firm computer to access child porn. A warrant was issued and the police searched Ditter's law firm computer on October 6, revealing multiple images of child pornography.

Search Terms

The tech company dug in further into Ditter's work computer and found more images as well as the search terms that Ditter used to access the porn including "really young teen boys" and other much more explicit terminology.

Lessons to Be Learned

Employees use work computers for personal activities: it is almost inevitable. Employees are known to check email, look at Facebook, and read gossip -- all on company time. This culture is the birthplace of terms such as NSFW. However, if there is anything that is clearly NSFW, child pornography tops the list.

One would think that the number of incidents of lawyers using firm computers to view pornography would be few, but that is false. For example, several years ago, another lawyer, Emerson Briggs, lost his license to practice law when he admitted using the firm laptop to view child porn. In another case, former Army Lawyer Gary Douglass Grant was disbarred for possession of child pornography. The case later created the brightline California rule that the possession of child pornography makes a lawyer unfit to practice law in the state.

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